Career profile : So, you want to be a detective ?

Brayer Martinez


Being a detective you must go through 3 levels; the requirements are a high school diploma but they prefer a college degree. Being a detective you are required to pass a physical fitness test also means increased flexibility and faster recovery from injuries or illness. The responsibilities you would be enforcing the city and state, looking out for the neighborhoods if by any chance they see anything suspicious. You would be an assistant for the victims of crimes. If you didn’t like paperwork in high school or college it will be back if you want to be a detective, being a police officer or any type of police you will be responsible with doing administrative paperwork. Being a detective is more difficult because you have to have at least 3 years of experience as a regular police officer and have to be very good on your performance being a police officer. Favorite responsibility is that you gather evidence in criminal investigations to get him caught. Keeping accurate records and arresting suspects is another responsibly you have and being a detective you will have to testify in court.

How much money will you make?

Average salary: $50,000 – $80,000

Median pay : $76,000


Many private and public universities in Illinois offer a 2 year in police criminal justice. The least expensive tuition is at Morton College would run you about $7,988 for the year. However, Morton College is one of two community colleges who offer an Associate’s Degree in criminal justice.  However, because there is no associate degree at City Colleges of Chicago, Wilbur Wright College, you could petition the school, fill out the paperwork and apply to pay City Colleges of Chicago, Wilbur Wright College prices for about half price if not more. Some of the more expensive private schools that traditionally offer Morton Students scholarships include DeVry University and Loyola University. Unless you are getting a full ride scholarship at one of these 2-year schools, the most economical option would be to pursue the associate’s degree at City Colleges of Chicago Olive-Harvey College (and petition and pay Morton college prices at $1,347 for full time). Then, if you still desire a Bachelor’s of law, you could take the additional classes at a university possibly part-time, while you work in the field. Sometimes employers will pay for your tuition as you pursue more education. Lastly, beware of Kendall College it’s a proprietary school that may entice you with recruiting and scholarship offers, but you’ll end up with a debt of around $30,000; stay away!

The person I had the opportunity to interview was Marcos Maldonado; he is a detective works for Cook County. He would be security at my job for a year before my job closed earlier.



Q: Can you tell me about your background information and how you got into this field?

A : Coming from a family that has educators and law enforcement in it. I gradually paved the way to working in law enforcement. I would see members of my family in their perspective field helping others and seeing the gratitude they felt by doing so. I was working in armed security and this field foreshadowed my interest in law enforcement as well.

Q : What other jobs could you do with the skills you have gained in this field?

A: Law enforcement is just about the law. There are many different aspects where one can take into other professions in life. For instance translating, babysitting, therapist, professor, lawyer and anything that has to do with interacting with people. Knowing the responsibility of keeping a job is a skill that many do not have these days.

Q: what personal characteristics are required for someone to be successful in your job?

A: Nowadays seeing more integration in any law enforcement entity is an essential characteristic. There are many different kinds of people in the United State. I, myself as a 2nd generation American. Knowing more than one language is an essential characteristic. Having an open mind and respecting others while knowing how to deal with stress.

Q: What do you think the future holds for people in your occupation?

A: The future is unforeseen however with the crime rate going on in Cook County lately more people will get into law enforcement and serve their country in this channel.  Many things are changing in Cook County and law enforcement is essential to that change.

Q: What are the biggest challenges in your job?

A: One of the biggest challenges in law enforcement is preserving life — essentially ourselves. In today’s world law enforcement is looked down upon. One has to accept showing up to work having the words POLICE on your uniform. You are essentially a target every time you put on that uniform.

Q: How old you have to be to start working as an officer?

A: You have to be 21 to start working and 18 to take the test and start the process.

Q: What college was your best?

A: Depaul University because I got my bachelors from there.